Schizophrenia is a serious mental disorder that causes hallucinations, disorderly thinking, and/or delusions. The condition requires lifelong treatment that often combines therapy sessions, medications, and other methods that a physician deems fit. There is a deep connection between an individual’s dietary choices and their mental health, so let’s look at how schizophrenia and dietary choices are interrelated. Here are the foods schizophrenia patients can include in their diets to manage the symptoms:
- Fruits: One aspect of the link between schizophrenia and dietary habits is that patients showcase a deficiency of fiber. If one is not getting enough fiber through their current diet, they should add fruits rich in fiber and vitamins. Patients can consider including pears, apples, raspberries, and mango to their diet. Raspberries top the list of fibrous fruits, with about 8 grams of fiber per cup. While they lower cholesterol levels, they also work to prevent health conditions generally associated with schizophrenia. One can keep digestion troubles, heart diseases, diabetes, and obesity at bay by eating foods rich in fiber.
- Vegetables: A healthy serving of vegetables in every meal is bound to keep an individual fit, both physically and mentally. Vegetables are low in fat and calories, making them perfect for those looking to lose weight. Veggies are packed with important vitamins and fiber, but they are often missing in the diet of those suffering from schizophrenia. Several vegetables like sweet potatoes and lima and kidney beans provide potassium, which is essential to maintain healthy blood sugar levels.
- Fatty fish: Omega-3 fatty acids are critical for the body, and research shows a strong link between schizophrenia and a diet rich in healthy fats. These fats are critical in preventing the disease, aid in slowing its progression, and are known to help ease the symptoms. If one does not eat fish, they can check with their physician for supplements. Otherwise, one can consider adding fatty fish, oysters, and crabs to their diet. Studies show a strong relationship between low levels of zinc and schizophrenia, and crabs and oysters help overcome this deficiency.
- Non-dairy yogurt: Healthy gut bacteria are responsible for the health of the immune system, and research has suggested a link between schizophrenia and a diet poor in probiotics. Probiotics are present in fermented foods like yogurt, kimchi, and sauerkraut, so schizophrenia patients should include these in their daily diet to boost their digestive health and immunity. Also, one should look out for casein antibodies that may be present in dairy or whey products, as they are counterproductive for the condition.
Unhealthy food habits are disastrous when fighting a condition like schizophrenia. Since there is a link between schizophrenia and diet, it’s best to understand it and include beneficial foods in the diet.